BOXING: Far Cotton’s Brown aiming to be the ‘Ultimate Boxxer’

Drew Brown
Drew Brown

Drew Brown is the latest Far Cotton fighter to get a chance to impress the nation’s fight fans.

Gym-mates Chantelle Cameron and Carl Fail have both starred on television recently – and Brown could get his chance on tonight (Friday).

The 21-year-old from Far Cotton competes in the inaugural ‘Ultimate Boxxer’ in Manchester, an exciting new tournament that brings together eight unbeaten welterweights to fight it out for a big money prize.

The promoters announced last week that ‘Ultimate Boxxer’ will be screened.

The quarter finals, including Brown’s fight with Jimmy Cooper, is being shown on the internet on UniLad (7.15pm) and the semi finals and finals are on 5 Spike from 9pm.

“This is great news,” said Brown.

“Every fighter wants to raise their profile and I’m one fight away now from boxing in front of millions of armchair fans.”

The quarter final between Brown and Cooper kicks off what promises to be a good night’s boxing at the Manchester Arena.

Cooper is a 26-year-old from Hampshire with a good amateur pedigree.

He won Haringey Box Cup gold in 2011 and represented England before turning pro, but according to Brown, size matters and he will win.

“I’ve been boxing up at super-welterweight,” he said.

“And when I went to the press conference I felt I was bigger and stronger than all the others.”

The winner of Ultimate Boxxer claims a £16,000 prize and Brown said: “I could do with a new kitchen – and a holiday !”

Tickets for Ultimate Boxxer are available from 07909 442443.

Kings Heath pair unlucky to taste defeat

Kings Heath ABC boxers Liam Davies and Akash Tuqir endured the highs and lows of amateur boxing over three eventful days in this year’s Elite finals.

Eighteen-year-old Tuqir surpassed the Kings Heath team’s expectations in his first senior competition as he reached the lightweight final.

He claimed the scalp of Great Britain boxer and No.1 seed Callum Thompson along the way in a very tactical and challenging semi-final.

Tuqir’s quarter-final had seen him at his stylish best as he overcame Liverpool’s Rory Lavery via a comprehensive unanimous decision points win.

The Elite final saw him matched with No.2 seed Mark Chamberlain (Wiseman) and the decision went 3-2 split against the Kings Heath boxer in a battle of long-range boxing.

“Akash boxed to instructions throughout and we were confident going into the last round that he was well ahead,” said Kings Heath head coach Arthur Daly.

“Unfortunately, despite a lot of experience, we appeared to somehow have misjudged the way it was being scored and it surprisingly went against us.

“We were all bitterly disappointed with the outcome.”

Tuqir’s team-mate, featherweight Liam Davies, overcome West Ham’s tough Mark Edwards via a unanimious points win and then won a thrilling semi-final against Ismail Khan (Hunslett).

But Davies was to see his dreams shattered in another agonising 3-2 split decision No.1 seed Bradley Strand (Everton Red Triangle).

“The decisions were debatable to say the least,” Daly said.

“But we have a chance to put the record straight in the very near future as each finalist is chosen to represent England in the Tri-Nations and there is every likelihood that they will all meet again in that competition. We certainly hope that this happens.

“Ultimately, Akash is a very young senior boxer and Liam is also experienced enough to come again.

“Whether we agree or disagree with the integrity of the scoring, this will be the perfect opportunity for us to put the record straight in an England vest and we will train and adapt them at Kings Heath accordingly for that eventuality.

“These lads gave us everything over three hard days of boxing at the highest level and both were devastated to lose in the manner that they did.

“But fewer than 24 hours later both were back in contact with the same view: “let’s go again”.

“There has been no self-pity or blame, and we have nothing but respect for their overall performances and the way both conducted themselves throughout the whole competition.”

Daly so proud of his Far Cotton duo

Far Cotton coach John Daly left the home of British boxing a proud man after Ben Fail and Laura Stevens reached the Elite finals.

The York Hall in Bethnal Green was the venue for domestic amateur boxing’s showpiece – and Fail and Stevens got there with two wins in as many days.

Both were beaten in the final, by Jordan Reynolds and Stephanie Wroe respectively, but have secured their place in the Tri Nations championship in June.

Daly said: “We were disappointed afterwards, but reaching the final was a great achievement. ‘Boxing News’ told me Laura’s final was one of the best bouts of the day and there wasn’t much between Ben and Reynolds.

“The way Ben has been talking and training, I was very confident he would win, but he wasn’t quite at his best and Reynolds was very good.

“I’m proud of both of them.”

Fail reached the final by outpointing Alex Patterson (Gemini) and knocking out Jack Stringer (UKAF) inside a round with a trademark body shot.

He had good spells in the final as well, but overall, Reynolds deserved the verdict.

Stevens also went down fighting in her final.

The fight with Wroe was a repeat of the 2016 final. Stevens was outpointed then, but last week’s bout was closer.

The 27 year old from Northampton gave Wroe trouble with her bustling aggression before losing on points.

“Laura gave a good account of herself,” said Daly, who had earlier seen her beat Hannah Shield (Birtley) and Omarah Taylor (Firewalker).

“She had three good rounds against a good boxer – and she didn’t lose by much.

“I was very pleased with her.”